Biogenesis PED Update: Ryan Braun, Gio Gonzalez, Yasmani Grandal

Marc Serota

As the investigation into the now defunct anti-aging clinic in Miami continues, we will surely learn more. Right now, though, players are having to deal with the scrutiny of being in the spotlight for something other than their on-field skills.

At some point there will be a resolution to the Biogenesis PED scandal, but for now the investigation is ongoing. Major League Baseball will surely collect all the information they possibly can before they determine their next steps. Will they issue suspensions? Fines? Will they do nothing at all? Any one of those outcomes is possible, but for now, we will sit back and wait as more comes from the investigation.

Braun a Client?

Although Ryan Braun presented a perfectly reasonable explanation about why his name showed up in the Biogenesis records, the Milwaukee Brewers' slugger may have more to explain. In an Outside the Lines report, T.J. Quinn and Mike Fish of ESPN say Braun's name is on more documents that could potentially place him as a client of the PED distribution clinic. A list written in April by someone keeping records for Biogenesis has Braun's name and a $1500 figure.

That list, a source familiar with Bosch's operation told "Outside the Lines," indicates that those players received performance-enhancing drugs from Bosch and owed him money. The document, one of dozens obtained by "Outside the Lines," suggests a closer link to Bosch and the now-shuttered clinic he ran in Coral Gables, Fla., than Braun has acknowledged.

Braun has refused to talk about the scandal outside of his prepared statement when his name was first linked. He told reporters yesterday that he would answer baseball questions only. For now, all we know is that Braun's name appears to be part of a list similar to the one first found by the Miami New Times in their investigation. Every player involved so far has denied involvement or chosen not to comment.

Teammates Speak Out

As players fight throughout a season together, they generally build bonds that turn to friendship on the field and off the field in some cases. That may not be the relationship Jayson Werth has with Gio Gonzalez, but Werth spoke out on Gonzalez's connection to the Biogenesis PED scandal today. Amanda Comak of the Washington Times relayed Werth's comments:

"I think time will tell," he said. "I'm assuming it's being investigated by the league and anyone else that has a computer. Obviously you hope that nothing comes of it and all that. I mean, in my opinion, it doesn't really seem like the type of guy Gio is."

Werth and Gonzalez have been teammates for just over a season now, but they have likely gotten to know each other throughout all of last season. Werth's comments are opinion, of course, but he makes an interesting statement about suspicions and guys who would likely be taking PEDs:

I've seen a lot of things. I've seen people that you would suspect could be, or may be, or maybe you even know that they are, you know?


"But I don't really feel like Gio would ever be a guy like that. I could be wrong. I don't think I am, but that's probably all I've got to say."

Grandal's Statement

Yasmani Grandal was suspended for a positive drug test shortly before the Biogenesis scandal broke. Once the news of the clinic's supposed distribution of PEDs became public information, it made sense that Grandal's name was on the list. He played for the University of Miami and made Miami his home ever since coming over from Cuba. Grandal apologized for his mistake when he was suspended, but he addressed his teammates earlier today.

According to Bill Center of the San Diego Union Tribune, no one on the team was willing to give specifics on what Grandal said, but they all seemed happy with his apology and potential explanation. Yonder Alonso said Grandal "made a big mistake." Mark Kotsay said the kid got "bad advice." As for Padres' skipper Bud Black? He simply said he had heard everything he needed to hear.

"I've heard everything I need to know," said Black. "I trust him. He apologized to me in November. He let me know in November that it wouldn't happen again. What was said in that room, stays in that room."

Grandal suffered an oblique injury last season that landed him on the DL. There has been speculation that Grandal may have used PEDs to overcome the injury, but no one is sure.

Melky Fails to Address Biogenesis

Melky Cabrera is another player who was busted for a positive drug test before the Biogenesis news broke. His suspension came last season, though. Cabrera was having a career year with the San Francisco Giants when he was suspended 50 games for a positive test. Cabrera had since apologized for his actions, but he issued another prepared statement with his new team, the Toronto Blue Jays, yesterday.

According to the team's website, Cabrera's statement was simple and direct. But he did not mention anything about Biogenesis. He said the statement would be the last time he comments on the PED issue, but Cabrera failed to confirm or deny his involvement with Biogenesis.

The Blue Jays are confident that the league has already punished Cabrera for his past misdeeds and there is little chance of a suspension arising out of the Biogenesis investigation. The Blue Jays signed Cabrera to a two-year deal this offseason.

Cervelli Denies Involvement

Francisco Cervelli was one of the players listed in Biogenesis documents indicating the veteran catcher was using PEDs. However, Cervelli has adamantly denied any involvement or ever using any performance-enhancing drugs. According to Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York, Cervelli had inconsistent statements regarding his connection to the clinic. He had mentioned a consultation with Anthony Bosch, but he said he was never injected and did not receive treatment.

Cervelli released a statement this past week about the issue and said in part:

"Look at me," Cervelli said, indicating his wiry physique. "You check the numbers. I know it doesn't matter, but if you check the numbers and everything, I don't use that stuff."

Like Ryan Braun initially, Cervelli's name did not have notations by it in the ledger, so there may be nothing more that links him to PEDs than his name on a paper. However, as we've seen with Braun, more information can come to light.

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